Journal of the European Society for Gynaecological Endoscopy


“Now we feel like we did everything we could”: A qualitative study into the experiences of Dutch patients who travelled to Belgium for infertility treatment

W. Van Hoof, P. De Sutter, G. Pennings

Bioethics Institute Ghent, Philosophy and Moral Science.

Correspondence at:


Clinic cooperation, cross-border reproductive care, infertility, patient-centeredness, quality of care.

Published online: Dec 31 2014


Many Dutch infertility patients go to Belgium for treatment every year. This is the first qualitative interview study looking into the experiences and perspectives of Dutch patients who travel to Belgium for infertility treatment. We recruited 16 heterosexual couples and one single woman to ensure maximal diversity in age, distance to the clinic, type of treatment and number of previously failed cycles. The interview data was analysed using inductive thematic analysis. The central theme in the data was that going to Belgium was the next step. The Dutch patients believed that the quality of care was very high in Belgium and that in taking this step, they did everything they could to achieve a pregnancy.